Rugby victory at last for Ellon

Ellons Douglas Sharp
Ellons Douglas Sharp

Ellon finally got their season up and running when they registered a nail-biting bonus point win over Caithness at The Meadows last Saturday.

The team broke their four-game losing streak thanks to tries from Jimmy Young, Ally Edwards, Ryan Bowron, Stuart Hackett, Doug Sharp and Adam Kusjak, as well as three penalties and one conversion from Phil Edwards.

Despite the score fest, Ellon only narrowly won the match 41-37, with their poor defence letting Caithness stroll in for a handful of their own scores.

But the northerners could not keep their discipline, and Ellon took full advantage of the visitors’ two yellow cards in the second half to bring themselves one point behind.

With the score at 36-37, the crowd were kept on tenterhooks until the last play of the game when wing Kusjak crashed over to secure the win.

Head coach Ryan Morrice said: “If I could describe how I felt in one word, it would be ‘relieved’. It was actually an indifferent performance. We played some better rugby against Highland last week.

“Our set piece wasn’t as effective, but again we showed flashes of what we are capable of.

“There’s still a lot of work to do defensively as we gifted them their tries.

“We know we still have a lot of work on our hands, but I’m proud of the way they stuck at it as it would have been easy just let the game go when we they scored their last try.

“We will take confidence from this and look to build against a very good Orkney team.”

Hosting Orkney at the Meadows this Saturday, October 4, is a prime opportunity for Ellon to pick up more points.

The islanders have shown good form so far this season, but have sometimes proven vulnerable away from home.

Morrice said: “We know it will be a big challenge next week. The pack is quite settled now but we will need to reshuffle the back line as Andrew Ovenstone will be back at Grammar and Jordan Tijou is going offshore.

“We are hoping Kyle Holmes will be back from illness and Stuart Cruickshank will be available after being at a wedding last Saturday.

“Alix MacDonald is also back from travelling so we are hoping to get him back in training. He was a big player for us last season.”